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January 10, 2009

Comments

dangermom

I wouldn't feel comfortable with it. And I've been married for more than 10 years! No thanks.

Carolyn

Don't look! In a way, it's like porn. Once that image is in your mind, you will never, never, never get it out of your head. No matter how badly you wish you could erase it. And of course there's nothing wrong with the male anatomy. Our bodies are wonderful things. But we shouldn't go around displaying it for the world. I've been married for 11 years and even though I'm very familiar with what male anatomy looks like, I still wouldn't want another man's naked image burned into my mind.

Carolyn

OK, another comment. After looking up some information about the play and its content, I wouldn't want to see it period. Never mind the nudity, that play has more disturbing problems.

Sometimes you have to ask yourself before you view something: Is it uplifting? Is it edifying? Can I grown and learn by viewing this? Or am I just filling my mind with more junk?

Think about it.

Grace Leigh

Your unease is a normal, natural reaction. What is not normal or natural is removing one's clothing before hundreds of people. Don't let anyone make you feel as though your response is the odd one. There is a reason we wear clothing, and it's a very good one!

Emmanuel Williams

Comments on the Equus discussion:
1. Taking one's clothes off in front of hundreds of others IS natural in other cultures.Our conventions about nudity aren't universal, or global.They have a practical purpose - nakedness can be COLD!- and maybe a spiritual purpose in the sense that they veil our physicalness, our bodily presence.
2. I think there are ways to clean one's mind, or feelings, of pornographic images. They don't have to stay there for ever. We can pray - to God, or Jesus, or the angels, or the Great Spirit (whatever works for you) to be inwardly cleansed. "May these images be lifted from me for ever so that I may be clean and light within." Or, whenever the porn images recur, visualize waterfalls, sunlit snow,whatever images of images of purity are real for you. Try not to think of them as images that will stay with you forever. This gives them more power.
3.The production of any play should be about the play, not about the production. The trouble with featuring Daniel Ratcliffe nude is that it becomes a major production issue which has nothing to do with Equus. So the producer becomes more important than the playwright.

Carolyn

I disagree to some degree with number 2 of your comment Emmanuel W. While I do believe that we can pray to be cleansed or to forget those pornographic images, it's still very, very hard to get those images out of your mind. Certainly you can visualize other things and try your best to clear you mind of those images. But it will take a lot of work and effort. It is best that those types of images are never put in your mind in the first place. Avoid all pornographic content like the plague that it is.

mike

Jez,

I believe that you are blowing this way out of proportion. While there is nothing wrong with you not wanting to see the naked male body (no one is forcing you), this whole discussion of the issue is far more prurient than the actual scene is. Take the advice of your friend's mom. I assure you that you will not be "haunted" by it. You will be able to view other men in a normal fashion without lustful thoughts.

Trish

Emmanuel W.--
It does not matter in the least whether nudity is acceptable in other cultures. We are living in THIS culture. It is wrong to put down someone's beliefs because of your belief that there may be someone else on earth who doesn't hold the same view. (And in fact, the idea that nudity is natural is far less prevalent globally than the opposite belief.)

Carolyn--you're right. This is a distasteful play on many levels, and nudity is the least of them.

My dear, my dear, NEVER apologize for your feelings about this. You don't have to "get over it." There is nothing to get over. You are not wrong. It's one thing to say that this is all right for those who choose it, but quite another to say you don't have the right to refuse it. If it makes you uncomfortable, you have every right to object. Period. Don't let anyone tell you differently.

aubrey

1 Corinthians 10:13

When we are tempted, God will help. He will provide a way out, not to avoid temptation, but to meet it successfully and to stand firm under it. This is testing as permitted and controlled by God to produce sterling character that is a reflection of His own.

God is faithful and will not allow us to be tempted beyond what we can bear and successfully conquer. He challenges us to meet the temptations that spring up before us on the road of life, beat them down, learn the lessons, and move on to receive the crown of life. He promises to be with us every step of the way. We can be

... confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ... (Philippians 1:6),

I understand the frustration of you already having the tickets- but stand up for your heart. Protect your heart and your eyes for your HUSBAND.

me

Maybe you could focus on the way that nudity is used in this play - not as porn but as an expression of art. I mean, would you close your eyes at seeing the statue of David because it's a naked man? I think there are very real virtues to avoiding lust, but perhaps you can think of this outside the 'lust' motif.

Kathryn Louis

If there is anything virtuous, praiseworthy, lovely, or of good report, we seek after these things. Pornography is pornography whether it's called art or not. Just say no to nudity. Who cares if you lose a little cash or even a lot of cash. Don't compromise your values.

Kevin

I can speak from experience when I say that the image WILL haunt you. You won't easily forget your first "peek." And it really can tempt you to dwell on what's under other guys' clothes. I've always regreted my frist "peek."

Yes, God has brought me healing, but He hasn't erased my memory. I've got to deal with what I've seen for the rest of my life.

Keep your innocence. Sell your tickets.

Gina

And on top of that, as Carolyn said, there's the violence/disturbing content in general. I couldn't see the play with or without nudity. If you're as sensitive as I am to that sort of thing, that's something else to consider.

Sandra

Equus is a pretty heavy play, so I question if you wanted to see it just because Daniel R. was starring in it? I'm sorry the tickets have already been purchased. If you want to see it badly enough, just familiarise yourself with the play prior to seeing it. Then you will know when to expect the scene and can preoccupy yourself with the program, or divert your attention in some other way. This is a lesson to be learned, as I attended a production of Equus over twenty years ago at a local university, and it was only because I admired the young actor who had the lead. I think he might have been slightly embarrassed when three young fans asked to visit with him after the play to offer our congratulations, but he was very gracious as well.

Dominik

If you're uncomfortable with something, there's probably a reason for it.

You don't need to necessarily articulate that reason, but realize that you might know more than you think you do.

Don't force yourself to do something just because you think others want you to do it.

Consult your heart of hearts; see what it has to say.

Dominik

Also, just because you bought the tickets doesn't mean you have to see the play.

Don't let a sunk cost justify a potentially bad decision.

Further, you can likely re-sell, trade, or give away the tickets to someone all too happy to get them.

A. Noel

It's OK to say, "I'm not comfortable with seeing this play." I've been saying that about Equus since I read the first reviews. I will probably keep saying it for the rest of my life.

timmy

Some of you people have some serious unhealthy issues and should seek therapy. What is so disturbing about the human anotomy? And for those of you quoting scriptures, If GOD wanted us to wear clothes we would have been born with them. Also we were created in GODS image. Other cultures have it right. We retuned from St. Martin where many Europeans on the beach were nude. We decided to give it a try and can honestly say, you should all try it. Your life will be healthier if you get over your hang up.

Sarah

timmy--G-d didn't create you with toothpaste in your mouth either, does that mean you shouldn't brush your teeth?

Jeremy Bohall

You have every right to avoid that particular part of the play and you have every right to avoid nudity in general. But the nude body is a thing of beauty - created by God. For thousands of years it has been used (possibly more than any other subject) to artistically portray beauty, simplicity and truth.

Obviously nudity has been abused in our culture. But the nudity in this play and this scene in particular is not used to evoke lustful feelings. When we are able to distinguish between nudity as art and nudity as perversion we have arrived at the understanding I believe God intended in his creation.

Kagehi

Hmm. As usual, you get a lot of insular, over self conscious, and usually conservatively brought up people showing up saying, "Its normal to be freaked out by something that I was told was a bad bad thing!". No it isn't. There is an entire group of Christians in the US, though not all that well known ones, who point out certain basic facts that are glossed over all the time by people that have turned this into the western worlds single most common and worst neurosis. They point out these things:

1. The Bible, while it does mention the matter a few times, almost never does so in the context of calling nudity itself a sin, but merely mankinds "reaction" to it. The whole original, "gasp, they discovered they where naked", bit is a sign of having sinned, not a proscription for "avoiding" sin. Obsessing over doing the same stupid thing they did is not a sign of divine favor, its admitting that, if you believe such a thing happened at all, we haven't learned a damn thing about avoiding stupid ideas since then.

2. Prominent cases, like the whole King David + Bathsheba incident have her being "rewarded", despite being naked in public, and her rapist torn apart in battle. I.e., she didn't sin, he did.

3. Then there is the simple practical reality that people didn't even "invent" showers until fairly recent times, so.. I am not real clear how you figure any of them ever bathed, if it wasn't public, and in the nude.

and finally 4. Baptisms where always conducted, "in the public view **and** in the nude", at least up until Victorian times, when all this BS anti-nude non-sense came about in the first place.

So, why is it wrong now, when it wasn't in Christ's time? Why is it horrifying for people to contemplate in the last few hundred years, mostly, again, since the period when Queen Victoria started making up all sorts of things she was personally offended by, but not in ancient times? Well, its simple, because some people confuse what their god thinks is wrong with what a) king and queens told their priests to say where wrong, or b) some priests, with even more issues about their bodies than most Americans seem to have, made up because they found other people doing them scary and confusing. The idea that such fear and discomfort is either normal, or helpful... Sorry, but seems like all its doing is causing those of you that have a problem with it to bite your nails, worry, and have panic attacks. If it was "good", and "right", to have a problem with it, why would it induce paranoia, fear, or worse "haunted" obsession?

One of your friends gave you the right advice, "Get over it." Your mother on the other hand... Sometimes parents have their own issues they haven't dealt with, and her advice, rather than being, "Its no big deal.", ended up being, "It really is about sex." Only if you can't keep the two separate, which is the problem with most of the people replying to your post. And I pity them for that. That advice, imho, only unintentionally made matters worse, even if she thought she was, somehow, helping.

The only bad decision here would be going their primed to "think" that nudity is automatically about sex, or taking the advice of the people here that think that running away from something, because, like you, it makes them nervous and scared, is the "right" solution to the problem.

historian

All criminals crucified in the Roman Empire was done in the nude. Men were hung facing out and women were hung facing towards the cross for modesty sake (like it matters.) But every drawing and sculpture of Jesus had him with a loin cloth - so the historical distortion and deception started way back from the 5th Century on.
btw, there's no cross either - Roman crucifixion were all done on a T-bar or a straight stake but if Christian were to be told the truth about history, what do we do with all the "Cross" metaphors when we teach Sunday School?

Jill

I'm disturbed by comments such as "I've got to deal with what I've seen for the rest of my life." Seeing the human body unclothed is not, in and of itself, a traumatic experience, and wanting to see/seeing the opposite sex naked does not render a person tainted for their future spouse, especially in the context in question. I've not seen this play, but the subject matter is "heavy." It also sounds extremely interesting.

If she doesn't want to see the play, for whatever reason, she should opt out, no explanation needed. But I think it's wrong to imply that once she's seen a naked man across the room, on a stage, she will need a lifetime of God's mercy, and possibly therapy.

Martin Hamilton

These women have nothing of substance to keep them with their husbands other than tradition, so they try to force others to remove any temptations. If they were married to someone they actually like, their lives would be so much happier. If you haven't yet married, what is wrong with being tempted to look for a husband you like? You will always have control over yourself in that quest, if you really have any values or morals.

That said, I would not want to see this play. Dan Radcliffe naked is the least of my worries.

bmmg39

I don't know much about the play except what I have heard -- about Radcliffe and his nudity, and that the play must obviously involve a horse of some kind -- and so I don't know the nature of the scene. I will reiterate the words of those who have pointed out the difference between nudity and sex.

I have a very laissez faire attitude towards things like this. Some people are perfectly comfortable with nudity, their own and/or that of others. Some people are very uncomfortable with it. Neither way is wrong. If your friend is eager to see that scene, there's nothing necessarily "naughty" about her; likewise, if you're uncomfortable with it, then others should not be saying you have a "hang-up" or calling YOU names, either.

Of all the plays, by the way, how did you end up choosing that one?

Mike Hunt

There is a good christian book about purity that I could recommend you. It's by pastor and theologian David Micheals. Here's a summary: http://whitemouse.ru/photo/italy/firenze_david.wmb

Novan Leon

Follow your conscience. Don't see the play, or at least close your eyes during the scene. From the sound of it, the play has a lot more wrong with it than just nudity. It sounds like a good play to skip. Go see "Wicked" instead. It's actually modest and uplifting.

Don't put junk in front of yourself when you're heart says no, regardless of the justifications expounded upon by others.

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